Skolars Director of Rugby Mark Croston previews this weekend’s clash with high flying Keighley Cougars….
‘This is the first of two visits to New River by Keighley this year, the second being the regular season closer at Friday Night Lights. Keighley maintained most of their 2010 Championship squad this year and in Jason Demetriou have arguably the league’s best player. We got a taste of how well Keighley would go this year in our season opener and we are in no doubts as to the challenge that awaits us on Sunday. They will be looking to keep up the pressure on leaders Swinton and we are in for a tough afternoon.
Last weekend was both pleasing and frustrating in equal measures. Great to get the bonus point but disappointing not get get the three points we deserved – but of course we didn’t but took another step forward. Everyone involved gave everything and those not in Whitehaven contributed throughout the week in training – giving everything all week.
We welcome Will Colleran to the Skolars fold this week. A specialist full back Will joins us from Wakefield where he has been outstanding in their U20s. Looking sharp in training, Will is looking forward to making his Skolars bow and and particularly enjoyed his trip to Brick Lane on Tuesday for the Skolars monthly team gathering – Im not going to expose the lightweight Korma eaters – but there were a few which we will need to work on!
It was great to see Jermaine Coleman return to playing duties after such a long lay off – its been almost two years since he featured regularly and I had forgotten what a good player he is and how much he adds to the team. Jermaine played with his younger brother Jymel for the first time and they showed signs of forming a strong partnership. Great to see Steve Ball back from injury and the return to the squad of Cariern and Tony – all putting in big performances.
The squad have worked hard again this week – we are all very aware we face a massive challenge on Sunday. We are, however, ready to step up once again and get the points that will take us very close to the play off spot. It will be a fantastic contest and we hope to be sinking one of the £1 pints of lager Howard has on offer in celebration.